Life Lab

Life Lab cultivates children's love of learning, healthy food, and nature through garden-based education.

img-2Subscribe to our newsletter.

Learn other ways to stay in touch with Life Lab.

Newsletter Archives

November 2017
Garden Educator Resources
School Garden Design Elements Video Lab
Tips on Making Garden Signs
NGSS Science and Engineering Posters
Spanish Language Resources
School Garden Support Organizations Unite!

( No, you are not missing any issues, we have been busy, but are glad to have gotten the November 2017 Educator Resource Blast out. 1/4ly blasts will continue).

Winter 2015
Program Updates
2014 Organizational Highlights
We Did It!
Top 10 Webinars
Become a FoodCorps Service Member
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
Recipe: Curry Winter Squash Soup
Lesson: Lighthouse – Communication Skills
Garden Tip: Outdoor Classroom Management
Upcoming Events
Life Lab Spring Benefit Brunch – Save the Date
Upcoming Workshops and Webinars

Fall 2014
Program Updates
New Edition of the Growing Classroom
Summer Camp Highlights
Food What Summer Program Celebration Dinner
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
Recipe: Apple Salsa
Lesson: Seed Ya Later from New TGC
Garden Project: Running an Effective Garden Workday
The Ultimate School Compost Resource
Upcoming Events
Life Lab Fall Gathering –  Saturday, October 11th
Upcoming Workshops and Webinars

July 2014
We’re Changing the Nature of Education

April 2014
Program Updates
Life Lab Garden Classroom Brunch 5/18/14 – A Feel Good Meal
edWeb Growing School Gardens Partnership – Common Core in the Garden
“Food,What?!” Youth Engage in Job Training and Land Jobs
Take 1 Minute and Vote for Life Lab
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
Lesson: Catch the Sun
Garden Project: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse
Recipe: Veggie Stone Soup
One Garden Serves Many Schools: A Unique Approach to Garden Programming
Upcoming Events
Workshops and Webinars
Friends of the UCSC Farm and Garden Events

December 2013
Program Updates
Training Others – Our Impact Defined
Our Year in Review
Common Core and Next Generation Standards in the Garden
Announcing the California School Garden Survey
School Garden Support Organizations Unite!
End of Year Sale – Take 10% off Everything at our Online Store
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
Lesson: Day at the Races: Soil Erosion and Conservation
Garden Tip and New Garden Sign Design: Saving Water in the Garden
Recipe: Pumpkin Tea Cake
Upcoming Events
Workshops and Webinars
Friends of the UCSC Farm and Garden Events

September 2013
Program Updates
Meet Faith – Support our Work
Summer Accomplishments
Announcing the National School Garden Network
The Top Ten of Farm- and Garden-Based Education
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
Root View Cups
Detergent Bottle Watering Cans
Recipe: Sunny Green Bean Pate
Coming Soon: Common Core Standards Database
Upcoming Events
Workshops and Webinar
Friends of the UCSC Farm and Garden Events

May 2013
Program Updates
What We Have Been Up To Since Our Last Newsletter
Meet our Senior Program Associate – Amber Turpin and her baby Hazel
Update on the California School Garden Training Program
California FoodCorps Update
Vote on the Top Ten of Garden-based Learning
FoodWhat Teens Bring Learning to the Farmers’ Market
Life Lab in the Press
End of the School Year Sale 10% Off
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
School Garden Summer Care
Farm and Garden Jokes
Recipe: Nasturtium Pesto

December 2012
Program Updates
What We Have Been Up To Since Our Last Newsletter
Welcome New Staff – Audries and Alex
Update on the California School Garden Training Program
Life Lab’s “Food, What?!” Youth Maya Receives National Brower Youth Award
Life Lab Selected as FoodCorps State Co-Host
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
Planting Fruits Trees and Vines in School Gardens
Sustaining School Gardens – Funding Garden Coordinators
Book Review: Our School Garden!
Recipe: Honey Seed Snacks
10% Off All Life Lab Publications
Summer 2012
Program Updates
What We Have Been Up To Since Our Last Newsletter
Thank You, Gail!
Update on the California School Garden Training Program
Meet Our Garden Educator – Emily
“Food, What?!” Receives Harry Chapin Self Reliance Award
“Food, What?!” is Hiring an Associate Director
Garden Tips and Educator Resources
Seed Saving Resources and Video
Growing Questions – Inquiry in the Garden
Teaching at a Farmer’s Market
Recipes: Zucchini Baba Ganoush and More
Discount on K-12 Sustainability Education Certificate – Citizen Science

Spring 2012
Garden Tips and Recipe
Make a Human Sundial
Edible Crop Planning
Recipe – Kale Salad
Program Updates
The Book of Garden Projects for Kids
Update on the California School Garden Training Program
In the Community Spotlight
Youth Food Bill of Rights
What We Have Been Doing Since Our Last Newsletter
Meet Our Garden Educator – Amy Carlson

Winter 2012
Garden Tips and Lessons
Lesson – Six Seed Trail Mix
Making Garden Signs – Tips and Photos
Lesson Packet – Feeling Fine With Fresh Foods
Recipe – Winter Squash Teacakes
Program Updates
2011 Program Highlights
Announcing the California School Garden Training Program
Sharing Adventures With Others
“Food, What?!” Photo-of-the-Month – Sign Up
Meet Our Outreach Director – John Fisher


Fall/Winter 2011
Life Lab Auction
Online Resources Summary
Essay – The Garden: A Master Teacher
Where We Have Been
Meet Our Education Director
Intern Spotlight
“Food, What?!” Harvest Festival
Worm Bin Bingo
Meet Our Chickens
Recipe – Winter Squash Pasta
Resources We Like
Upcoming Events

Summer 2011
Working with Interns
Spanish Language Garden Education Resources
Garden Scavenger Hunts
Meet Don, our Associate Director
Top Ten Contest
“Food, What?!” Photo-of-the-Month
Food Justice Defined in the Words of our Youth
Our Online Auction
Camp in Review
Make your Schoolyard Green
Websites we Like
Upcoming Events

Spring 2011
Top Ten Contest
Cooking with Kids
My Edible Garden – Edible Art Activity
Garden Education Songs
The New Life
CA School Garden Survey Results
Websites we Like
Meet Allison our Garden Educator
Register for Day Camps
Life Lab in the News
Upcoming Events

December 2010
The Wonders of Chard
Reuse in the Garden
Chive Hairdos and Stone Paperweights – Reuse Activities
What our Peeps are Saying
Workshops and Field Trips
Websites We Like
Life Lab on GTv
California School Garden Survey

Fall 2010
Life Lab Benefit
Life Lab spanning the globe
10 Garden Activities
Sunflower Green Bean Pate Recipe
Farm and Garden News – Food What update
School Gardenings 100 plus years ago

Summer 2010
Save the Date – Life Lab Benefit
Life Lab wins Gold
Chive Heads and Root View Cups
Fritata Recipe
Farm and Garden News – Food What, Green Schools, Oral History Project

Spring 2010
New Publications for Families and Pre-school Educators
Download Science Exploration Units for 1st-4th Grade
Green Garden Smoothies
Farm and Garden News – Food What update

Summer 2009
Life Lab Celebrates 30 Years – Birthday Party Video
Annual Benefit Event
Lessons for Educators
Rhubarb Soda Recipe
Farm & Garden News – Video Contest winner, Food What update

Spring 2009
Life Lab Celebrates 30 Years – Birthday Party, Video Contest, History Timeline
The Garden, A Master Teacher
Rhubarb Bran Muffins Recipe
“Food, What?!” Is a Blast

Winter 2007
Food Scraps for Waste Free Schools
Roasted Roots Recipe
Worms, Worms, Worms
Activty: “Bringing in the Clean-up Crew”

Summer 2007
School Lunch Program Overview
Fresh Fruit Crepes Recipe
“Food, What?!”
The Growing Classroom New Edition
Activity: “Hear Us, Hear Us”

Winter 2006-2007
The California School Garden Network
Curried Winter Squash Soup
15 Million for California School Gardens

Summer 2006
Life Lab Worldwide
Summer Salsa Recipe
The Kindergarten Initiative in Philadelphia
New CDE Regional Training Center
Beeswax Candle Garden Activity
Gardens for Learning: Creating and Sustaining Your School Garden

Winter 2005
Garden Classroom Update
AVANCE Program at Life Lab
Rainbow Chard Rolls Recipe
“Rainbow Chip” Garden Activity

Fall-Winter 2005
How to Teach Stewardship to Children
Recipe for Winter Soup
Children’s Books Reviews
Ways to Use Recycled Materials in the Garden

Summer 2004
Life Lab Celebrates 25 Years
Student Project: Making Fruit Leather
The Importance of Environmental Education
Benefits and Maintenance of Chickens in the Garden
A National Initiative in Plant-Based Learning

Spring 2003
Managing an Effective Outdoor Classroom
Garden Maintenance in the Summer
Garden Grants
“Wheat Heads” Kids Activity

Winter 2003
Teaching Nutrition Through a School Garden
Making the Consumer Connection
Student Project: Herb Tea Bags

Fall 2002
Garden Classroom Update
Educational Resources
Field-to-Market-to-You Update
Reducing Trash in the Classroom

Spring 2002
Sustaining Your School Garden
Good Bugs for the Garden


From Last Century

Fall 1996
A Garden in Every School
Harvest Hotline – What can my class do in the winter?
CD Review – North American Birds (what is a CD?)
Nutty Bird Treats
Life Lab’s New Web Page Announced
Call for Presentations: Education in Blossom: The School Garden-Community Partnership
Book Review – The Geography of Chilhood by Gary Paul Nabhan and Stephen Trimble


Comments are closed.

follow us on Facebook

2 days ago

Life Lab

The Sprouts Healthy Communities Foundation is proudly celebrating five years of supporting nonprofits that teach students and communities about the goodness of fresh ingredients. This year, the Foundation awarded more than 110 Neighborhood Grants to nonprofit organizations, with Life Lab being one of them!

We are grateful for the continued support from Sprouts Healthy Communities Foundation. Life Lab is honored to have been chosen as a recipient of the Neighborhood Grants. Our partnership reflects Sprouts Farmers Market’s core values of education, environmental stewardship, and nutrition.

With this support we have been able to launch and sustain, a robust directory of easy to use activities that require no screen time, promote healthy eating and inspires creativity. This site is perfect for teachers and parents alike! has garnished over 7k users from all over the world, in almost every continent, since our launch in April.

Sprouts Farmers Market

#sproutsfarmersmarket #MyLifelab #local #nonprofit See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 week ago

Life Lab

🌱 Join the SGSO Leadership Institute 🌱

Every year, we host a School Garden Support Organization Leadership Institute to provide an opportunity for school garden professionals from across the country to collaborate, learn from one another, and develop resources to share with a national audience. Collectively, SGSO Institute participants have improved their own work while also sharing ideas and resources to help others do the same.

In the face of the myriad challenges of 2020, all of you in SGSOs across the country are innovating in creative and inspiring ways to sustain and enhance garden education for their students. We are eager for other SGSOs to learn from you! With generous support from Whole Kids Foundation , we are pleased to be able to provide stipends for peoples’ contributions to these Working Groups.

This year’s SGSO Institute is open to newcomers and SGSO Institute Alumni!

🚨 Applications are due November 6, 2020 🚨

To learn more about this exciting opportunity and apply, visit: See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 week ago

Life Lab

Life Lab celebrates Indigenous Peoples Day with special recognition of the land on which our gardens grow and by sharing beautiful family friendly resources highlighting indigenous storytelling and efforts of Native peoples to reclaim food sovereignty, cultural identity, and native land stewardship.

The Life Lab Land Acknowledgement, now shared at all formal gatherings in our Garden Classroom on the UCSC campus:

“The land on which we gather is the unceded territory of the Awaswas-speaking Uypi Tribe. The Amah Mutsun Tribal Band, comprised of the descendants of indigenous people taken to missions Santa Cruz and San Juan Bautista during Spanish colonization of the Central Coast, is today working hard to restore traditional stewardship practices on these lands and heal from historical trauma.”

*Land acknowledgement developed in partnership with the
Amah Mutsun Tribal Band Chairman and the Amah Mutsun
Relearning Program at the UCSC Arboretum.

Learn more about the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and the

Life Lab is honored to support the film, GATHER (Gather) with a
FREE virtual screening on October 30th at 7pm

📷 credit: Amah Mutsun Land Trust website See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 weeks ago

Life Lab

Looking for some #garden #joy? Join us for a sweet sharing of Life Lab Reimagined: program updates, inspired learning, and community at our Fall Benefit this Saturday at 10:30am 🌱Register at 🌱Learn about our New Curriculum, New Life Lab Educator Certification Program, New Staff, and New Garden Additions👀Plus all the beautiful work we’re doing to support school garden education locally and nationally🌻Participants are automatically eligible to win a raffle prize courtesy of @synergyclothing ❤️ #schoolgarden #education #kisstheground #teachtheyouth #landstewardship #fundraiser See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

3 weeks ago

Life Lab

It’s Harvest Festival Week🌻happening virtually October 5-10th. A collaboration between the Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems UCSC CASFS Farm Life Lab​, and students of UCSC Food Systems Working Group
Mark your calendar! The week-long series is full of fun virtual activities for all ages, with live streamed musical performances, a lecture on agroecology from a panel of experts, and ending the week with Life Lab’s #Funtastic Fall Benefit highlighting new program updates and staff/garden additions. Register at

Visit for a complete schedule of events and registration instructions.

Monday, October 5
7:00 PM – 7:45 PM
Life Lab Backyard Chickens Q&A

Tuesday, October 6
10:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Saving Seeds, Sustaining Our Communities

Wednesday, October 7
1:30 PM – 2:45 PM
The evolution of agroecology as a practice, a research discipline, and a social movement

7:00 PM – 7:45 PM
Nurture Yourselves With Nature!

Thursday, October 8
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Cider Donut Workshop and The Everything Apple Panel

6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Celebrating Queers and Nature

7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Giant Green Anemone! Going Deep Into Local Tide Pool Explorations

Friday, October 9
12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Planting Seeds For Success: Community Connections to Water Your Garden for Wellness!

2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
What is the Food Systems Working Group and what does it do?

5:00 PM – 7:30 PM
Rachel Carson Garden Cooking + Poetry Workshop/Mic!

Saturday, October 10
10:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Life Lab Fall Benefit Gathering
#schoolgardens #gardeneducation #lifelab #harvest #gratitude See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

4 weeks ago

Life Lab

Happy weekend everyone ☀️Enjoy this sweet share of the UCSC Farm featuring Life Lab 🌱and our chickens! 🐓We look forward to sharing more with all of you as part of our upcoming Fall Benefit on October 10th. Register at See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

4 weeks ago

Life Lab

In celebration of the Fall Equinox 🍁we are excited to share a poignant new film called Kiss the Ground Movie🌱Life Lab is honored to have partnered with Kiss the Ground to develop middle school curriculum and accompanying training video for educators, focused on the process of capturing and storing carbon in living organisms such as soil, plants and algae.🌿

This hopeful film showcases part of the solution to climate change that is right under our feet: biosequestration in the soil. Life Lab invites you to join a Global Watch Party for the film, followed by a live Q and A at 6pm PST / 9pm EST. For more info, go to Kiss the Ground Movie 🌍 #Lifelab #regenerativeagriculture #schoolgardens #soilhealth #earthactivist #climatechangesolutions See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 month ago

Life Lab

It’s World Gratitude Day! 💐Life Lab is grateful for our community and to continue our 40+ year mission of cultivating children’s love of learning, healthy food, and nature through garden based education🌱#life lab #schoolgardens #education #worldgratitudeday #gratitude See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 month ago

Life Lab

Join us on October 10th at 10:30am for Life Lab’s Fall Benefit: A Celebration of Learning and Community.
Register at
This virtual event includes a tour of Life Lab’s evolving work and vision. Plus we have a surprise announcement! We are thankful for your encouragement and support as a member of our Life Lab community. Despite the challenges of this unprecedented year, Life Lab is moving forward with grace and creative innovation. The events of this season have provided opportunities to support our local community and national networks in new ways, expand our reach through virtual connections, and dive more deeply into justice and equity in all of our work. We are strengthening the roots that feed Life Lab programs as we continue to transform the Nature of Education. Continued cultivation of children’s love for learning and connections with healthy food and nature during COVID is essential and brings hope, wonder, and a much needed breath of fresh air. We are excited to share the inspiring work of our dedicated staff with you! #gratitude #schoolgardens #education #lifelab #fundraiser #gardens
See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 month ago

Life Lab

🚨Join us TODAY at 11am PST🚨

💚Bringing Social Emotional Learning and
Mindfulness Education to Your Work💚

Join Sheri S. Dollin, M.Ed., Educational Consultant and Mindfulness Facilitator, and Sunny Wight, Co-Founder of Mindfulness First, for an overview of mindfulness and Social Emotional Learning (SEL) in the distance learning setting.

Together, we will look at how an understanding of trauma, mindfulness and SEL can help us to manage stress while nurturing the scientifically proven “protective factors” that help prevent and manage trauma and mental health issues both for ourselves and our students.

We will specifically learn about the brain science of stress, and practice mindfulness techniques you can teach to your students. We’ll also take a look at Mindfulness First’s synchronous and asynchronous online work, and quickly understand that it’s easier than we think to integrate mindfulness and SEL into online classrooms. Bring: something to draw with and a piece of paper, for Mindful Art.

For more information and to register click the link below See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

Stock up your Garden Classroom

Life Lab provides truly inspiring training. Their breadth of experience, joy for teaching, and commitment to sharing knowledge highlight the best practices in food and garden education.
Erica CurryTraining and Professional Development ManagerFoodCorps
Thank you for such a wonderful field trip experience! Your leaders did such a great job at keeping our kids engaged.
Sheila BrickenKindergarten TeacherSan Lorenzo Valley Elementary
Terry had another awesome two weeks at Life Lab. I think he learns more there than in any other part of his year. School is great, but he’s passionate (and often dogmatic) about what he learns there.
Tara NeierCamp ParentSummer camp mom
Translate »
Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial